Keurig single-cup coffee makers free up extra time while producing quality brews. But your day can turn into a nightmare fast if your machine suddenly goes on the fritz and there’s no help in sight. These are a few common problems experienced by Keurig owners, and the solutions are proven to get your sanity back on track before your next cup.

  • Vinegar
  • Paper clip or toothpick
  • Charcoal-filtering device
  • Bottled or filtered water

A drawback to Keurig machines is their thin water lines, which can be easily clogged with debris. If the machine is brewing but little or no coffee is produced, running a few cups of water through the machine without a K-Cup can allow the lines to clear any buildup. The exit needle (also called the “K-Cup pin”) can get clogged with grinds; gently clean in and around the pin with a toothpick or paper clip to dislodge the debris.

The harmful effects of calcium mineral buildup in your Keurig coffee maker can be avoided by descaling the machine every six months. A common method of descaling is to run a large cup of vinegar through the lines. The manufacturer may recommend a particular product to accomplish this, but Keurig owners have said that vinegar produces the desired effect.

Mineral buildup can make an otherwise perfect cup of coffee taste terrible. If the machine is working well but your coffee doesn’t taste right, you can correct the taste from chlorine or other chemicals by using charcoal filtering devices. If your water is hard, using a softener won’t fix the problem; instead, use filtered or bottled water to brew your coffee.

  • Running vinegar through your Keurig machine might leave a nasty aftertaste, so it's recommended to run multiple brew cycles of water before you return the coffee maker to regular use.

  • If your Keurig machine requires servicing and you need assistance, the manufacturer can be reached at (866) 901-BREW.

About the Author

Christopher de la Torre

Christopher de la Torre has been writing about science and communication since 1998. His work appears on websites including Singularity Hub and in "Vogue." He holds a Bachelor of Science in biology and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Eastern Connecticut State University and is pursuing a master's degree in English from George Mason University.